Setting Information, and Themes. Concise version
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Arabel has entered its fifth incarnation. The setting picks up eleven years after events that ended v4. Cormyr was devastated when the Stormhorn Mountains, turning out to be the corpse of a primordial entity, one that was granted new life by the blood of martyrs to its cause. While devastated, the region survived total destruction due to the actions of adventurers hailing from Arabel, as well as through the deployment of a lost elven contingency weapon.
Over the years, not only Cormyr has changed. The forest of Cormanthyr have been reclaimed by elven armies, and remain one of Arabel's few allies against outside aggression. Sembia has fallen under sway of the Shadovar, and imposes heavy trade restrictions on Cormyr, starving the once prosperous nation when it most needs wealth to rebuild.
Arabel, cut off and isolated from mainland Cormyr, is both a place of considerable danger, and great possibility. Hardcastle associates discovered a new material, Mythalite, one that soon proved to be very valuable, and has caused an influx of brave men and women willing to make their fortunes on the frontier, serving prospectors and delving the ancient Netherese ruins that Arabel was built on. Dangerous, and far from certain to enrich you even if you live, the success of those few prospectors that succeed inspire more to risk their lives and futures for fortune. Rumors have recently started to surface of dark shadows lurking in the ruins, but so far they are discarded as superstition or the odd remaining aberrant monsters.
-A Nation in Recovery
Twenty years ago Cormyr was a nation to rival any on Faerun. Heroism, and patriotism still exists, and many Cormyrian Braves are still found in Arabel, though their patriotism is a more pragmatic kind. Cormyr has weathered many crisises, but with the wealth coming into the nation from mythalite, it is recovering. Many are worried that Cormyr's closest trade allies are now Thayan wizards rather than the hearty Dalelands or Sword Coast, but with wealth flowing into the city and additional sea ports in Arabel, trade is bringing immigrants and investments into a nation that only a year ago appeared to be dying.
Valiant noblemen, cunning wizards, and heroic adventurers are coming to the city of Arabel in Cormyr now, seeing that city beginning to shine once again as the crown jewel of Cormyr, a center of trade, diplomacy, and danger.
-Realities of the Frontier
If the calamity a decade ago forced hard realities on the nation as a whole, no where are these realities felt harder then in the Frontier settlement of Arabel. The city is still rebuilding a decade after major flooding and disaster, and the wilderness outside the Citadel district has grown wilder and more dangerous over the past decade. Allies that can be trusted are few and far between, and even those that can be found have interests and agendas of their own. Those that make their way in Arabel must reconcile themselves to these new realities. Friends and a safe place to lay your head are often more valuable then gold, and even the righteous must think twice before turning away help from unsavory would be allies. Isolated and largely alone, Arabel, and those that call it home must forge their way as best they can.
-Weight of History
Cormyr has a long and varied history. Netherese, elves, and human kingdoms have called it home before Cormyr was formed. And all these have left their mark. Lost ruins, magic and lore still can be found for those that are willing to tread the wilderness and light less-halls, and brave the dangers that await within. Many of Arabels biggest threats, the primordial being the latest, and most notable example have been ones left behind long age, and it may be that the people of Arabel will need to contend again with the weight of history before all is said and done.
-A Time of Great Opportunity…
Wealth, power, lost and forbidden lore are all available. As is the means for adventurers looking to leave their name in history. There is no shortage for possible avenues for adventures in the Arabel that has formed, and much like an blank book is ready for Adventurers to write their own tales, and dictate how the future of the city unfolds.